August Recommended Reading

Summer is officially wrapping up, the kids are heading back to school again (or perhaps, for the first time), and everyone seems to be refreshed and in the mood to get things done.

What better time to learn more about money than right now! Here are a few things I found in August that ought to get you started:

The Ten Evils

On August 1st, Trent from The Simple Dollar began an excellent series on “The Ten Evils,” an idea that originated in a martial arts book. Trent devoted several posts to discussing these “character flaws,” as he describes them, and how they relate to personal finance. The various parts are:

This is an excellent series that drives at the heart of how we can improve our character and as a result, improve our relationship with money. I liked it so much that I nominated it for the best series of the year at the Plutus Awards site.

Understanding Your Health Insurance

Trying to explain to someone how their health insurance works is not always the easiest task in the world. A lot of people simply give up and pay whatever bill comes their way, regardless of its accuracy.

That’s why I was so delighted to see a thorough, but easy-to-understand explanation of how most health plans are designed to operate, courtesy of The Digerati Life. Read the 3 important tips for understanding health insurance details.

Building Wealth

Courtesy of Get Rich Slowly, I found a gem from brip blap which aggregated 38 thoughts on building wealth. I’m a sucker for good lists (and never scoff at being reminded of the basics), so it was nice to see ideas like:

  1. Getting married and staying married is a good financial move.
  2. You cannot spend too much on your health.
  3. Your first job out of school will set a pattern for your entire life – if you let it.

Parents and Secrets

Via Free Money Finance, we arrive at Smart Money’s 10 things your parents won’t tell you, a collection of interesting trends in the financial relationship between parent and child. Most surprising?

#3: Someone is taking advantage of me, and

#9: Take my car keys!

Home Exchanges

Ever since The Holiday, I’ve been secretly dreaming about the home swap vacation we’ll take one day (when we actually have a house to swap). The folks at Money Crashers put together a very comprehensive guide to the pros and cons of home exchanges. Best highlights include:

The only cost associated with house swapping is the membership fee for the online listing service (which is essential to find someone to swap with). These fees are usually $100 or more per year…

People swap homes to stay in someone’s yacht, or even their RV so they can tour an area. You can often find unique lodging options…

Be sure to call your insurance company and check your coverage details and limits first. Also, confirm that these will apply to someone with whom you are exchanging homes. You may even want to increase your coverage limits…

Happy August!

And, just to close out with a funny, an extreme couponer was recently arrested for stealing 185 newspapers to get the coupon inserts, claiming she didn’t know it was a crime.

See you next week, folks.